Monday, September 5, 2011

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New Age Religion, The New ‘Normal’

Those of you who have been receiving and reading my “Gin’s Reflections” writings, (or my ‘epistles’ as Phil, my brother-in-law calls them) are aware that much of the content of each one has been related to my sense of an urgency for all true Christians to take their heads out of the sand, and hopefully return to the conviction that we must test everything that we hear, believe, think, and do, with the truth as it is found in the Bible. Most of us, myself included, have become biblically illiterate, depending on others to do the studying for us, and then often accepting just about anything that is said or written by others without studying and verifying what is true or not. No wonder true Biblical faith is quickly becoming a thing of the past. All too often we have set aside our Bibles, and yet we quickly turned to books and/or the words of others that proliferate the dissemination of every half truth or out right lie being proclaimed by the “if the it feels good, do it” gurus that are springing up like a bunch of cock roaches. And what are we Christians, who say we are dedicated to our faith in Christ, doing while our Lord and His Word are, not so slowly, but very surely, being marginalized, watered down, perverted, compromised and every other word one could think of that denotes the ultimate destruction of true Christianity. Then when we are confronted with the reality of the teachings that are now being presented as the New Age versions of Christianity, we listen to them and accept them as being the new normal, and often discarding true Biblical doctrinal knowledge as old hat and not relevant in this ‘evolving’ world.

When I first began writing today, I felt so angry with such teachers of deception, and those supporting them, I wanted to ring every one of their necks for what they are doing to Jesus and to those who believe in Him. I must admit that I was going at this from a rather self righteous attitude. My anger was misguided and misplaced. I was reminded that there, but for the grace of God, go I. If we are not careful, any one of us can be tempted to listen to and fall into that same pit of deception that others have. Not only that, we could even become one who deceives and perverts the Word of God ourselves. With the help of the Holy Spirit, I hope I can correct myself and write this from Jesus’ point of view with love even towards those who would even crucify Him all over again.

If there is to be any anger, it must be first directed at myself rather than others. I am just as guilty of passively standing by while the apostate church has been blossoming, and now is almost in full bloom. I look to my own actions, or inactions, to explain what may be some of the causes which have created an environment for this deception to be able to take root and grow so rampantly in our world today. My life has often been a good example to illustrate the meaning of the scripture: “But be ye doers of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the Word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: for he beholdeth himself and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.” (James 1:22 - 24) I was not diligent to keep God’s Word ever before my eyes and ever in my heart that I may be consistent in not just knowing the Word, but also in obeying it. I don’t mean this in a legalistic point of view, for none of us can keep the law. Saved or not, none of us is ever free from the temptation to sin. Realizing that should reinforce the understanding of our continual need for God’s forgiveness, mercy, and grace in our lives.

How different my life could have been had I been more diligent to make use of the glass, or mirror, of the “perfect law of liberty” (God’s law), by which I could be convicted of my sin and thereby recognize my need to ask God’s forgiveness, and be set free from the law of sin and death by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ. Too many times I walked according to the desires of my own flesh, and not according to the Word of the Lord. In so doing, I have given the ones I love a mixed message.

Why then should it be a wonder to me when even those whom I may have had a chance to influence, turn from the true faith in Christ, and go after strange gods. Before you know it, they have then listened to and begun to follow this belief in this ‘New Age faith’ where anything goes. It becomes easy to set aside the God of the Bible, and replace Him with many gods, no god, or the god of ‘self’. Forgetting who we are in Christ, we begin to think that is the ‘normal’ way to believe and live.

If only I had better demonstrated the example as given in the following scripture - “But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the Word, this man shall be blessed in his deeds.” (James 1: 25) I make no excuse for my failure, for there is none. I can’t even blame my failures on ignorance, for the answer to my lack of knowledge and wisdom was always there and accessible to me. It is written: “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth (without reproach) not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.” (James 1:5 -8) Had I not been ‘double minded’ myself, perhaps I would have had a more positive affect in the lives of others. I say this not to exalt myself as having any innate qualities to affect the lives of others, but had I let God dwell within more richly, I would have been a more capable vessel to draw others to God and thereby glorify Him.

The past can not be changed except to ask God’s forgiveness and rest in the assurance that, because of Christ, I am and will be forgiven each time I repent. Thank God, He does not leave me as I am, but continues to perfect me and transform me more into His image.

So now, you may still be asking, what has all this to do with the growing apostasy in the church and world today? The apostate church could not exist unless the apostate individual(s) did not first exist. I have been doing some research into the various kinds of deception that are infiltrating the body of believers, not just the lives of unbelievers. There are so many, I could not possibly attempt to cover all of them. I must admit, I was seduced by some of these, and even a supporter, in times past. That is how I personally know how devious Satan is. He puts just enough truth in his lies so as to make them appear to be the truth. When we don’t study the Word ourselves, we become vulnerable and easy prey to his seducing lies, and to the desires of the flesh.

It is my intent to expose one of the most popular and powerful persons, and her partner that is causing many today to fall away from faith in the Christ of the Bible. Before I mention her by name, I wish each of us to once again realize that but for the grace of God any one of us could also follow. Oprah Winfrey, and her guru partner, Eckhart Tolle, have begun one of the fastest growing churches presently in the world. She was raised as a Baptist and still professes to be a Christian. That, and the fact that she has such popularity and power through her TV programs, makes her extremely dangerous and influential in contributing to apostasy even in the lives of those who profess to be Christians.

I used to be a fan of Oprah, and listened to her program quite often. Then some time ago, I heard of her New Earth Religion, and how she was distorting who Christ is and why He came to Earth. One of the first things I heard her say was that she had turned away from the God of the Bible because He was a jealous God, and she did not want to believe in a God that was jealous of her. My heart sank for her, for just as Satan had deceived Eve, so too was Oprah. He whispered this lie, and in her weakness and vulnerability, she received it. I was led to look up the word jealous to determine just what it meant in relationship to the God of the Bible being a jealous God. I discovered that it does NOT mean ‘to envy another’ as Oprah had misinterpreted it. Rather, it means ‘to be vigilant and zealous.’ So God is saying to us that He loves us so much that He is zealous and vigilant to watch over and care for us. Remember, He is the one who first loved us even when we were lost in sin and did not even know Him.

In my research, I listened to several of her video clips where she explains that she believes that there could not possibly be only one way to God, for each person’s way is the ‘light’ within themselves and their own ‘consciousness’ that they choose to follow. Thus, the god that is in you is not the Holy Spirit, but the god of your own enlightenment that you develop by and within yourself. She says that Jesus did NOT come to die on the cross to redeem us from sin, but by example to show us how to develop our own similar consciousness. It is true that He is our role model for our behavior. However, to limit who He is to the status of simply being a role model, is to deny the deity of Jesus, making the sacrifice of His life’s blood meaningless. And of course, since Jesus was not the Son of God who arose from the dead, we can not have a personal relationship with Him, nor can we receive His Holy Spirit to indwell us and lead us into all truth. No longer can we have the assurance of our own eventual resurrection, for His death on the cross and ultimate resurrection and return to Heaven is also negated and denied.

One of Oprah’s gurus, Eckhart Tolle, has written several books which have been used as part of the basis for the curriculum taught in Oprah’s New Earth religion. It involves a great deal of Buddhism, Hinduism, other Eastern Religions, paganism, and the belief in reincarnation. Isn’t it ironic, that even some Christians are falling away from biblical faith to believe in teachings of a mere humanbeing like Tolle, but they won’t search the Scriptures for the real truths of God? “Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” (II James 3: 7) We are reminded to test everything to see if it aligns with the Scriptures, for they provide the only true measuring stick. “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.” (I Thes. 5: 21)

“Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God. Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: and every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even already is it in the world. (I John 4: 1 – 3)

“But continue in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; and that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ
Jesus. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” (II Tim. 4: 14 – 17)

I have not written this to stir up hatred towards Oprah or her partner, but to be a ‘voice crying out in the wilderness’ to stir each of us up to awaken to this reality. Satan is using anything and everyone he can to cause even believers to fall away from the faith in God and His Word. I believe Oprah may be a very loving, kind, and sincere person, but she and her partner are sincerely wrong. I do not say they are going to Hell. Heaven or Hell is in God’s hands, for He is the only one that knows the heart. I know that God does not wish anyone to perish (die in their sins and thereby condemn themselves to Hell). I do know that God has instructed us to study the Word that we may be a workman that does not need be ashamed. To be forewarned is to be forearmed against the fiery darts of Satan and the powers and principalities of this world. I pray that both Oprah and Mr. Tolle will repent and have faith in Jesus Christ, the Son of God, as Lord and Savior before it is too late for them. He is faithful to forgive. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh to the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) To the unbeliever Jesus said, “Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world. I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he [the Son of God], ye shall die in your sins.” (John 8: 23, 24) If a person does not believe in and follow Christ as Lord and Savior and the only way to God the Father, can he legitimately call himself a Christian?

Woe be unto all those who practice to deceive others and draw them away from faith in Christ, the Son of God, who gave His life on the Cross. Jesus said, “And whosoever shall offend
(harm) one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea. However, the Lord does not want anyone to perish, but to come to the saving knowledge of Christ the Lord. Christians, let us not be deceived. Stand on the solid rock of faith in Jesus Christ, the only name by which one can be saved. Stand on the Word, and speak boldly in defense of Christ our Lord

Jesus said:
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved. He that believeth on Him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he has not believed in the only begotten Son of God.” (John 3: 16 – 18)
The ‘whosoever’ means any of us can come to Jesus, ask Him for forgiveness, and ask Him into your heart to be your Savior and Lord of your life.
“The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; that if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God has raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.” “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. (Romans 10: 8 – 11, 13)

Ginger Rahn


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